Reuters Health news service reported on November 5, 2010 on a new study conducted by the University of Michigan which shows that self-employed urologists were twice as likely to order imaging tests as employed urologists who received a flat salary. The self-employed doctors stood to make more money by ordering more tests. The physicians who received a flat salary were not influenced by a profit motive in their decision to order tests.

The data base for the study included 37 million out-patient visits to urologists in all regions of the country. Four out of five of the physicians included in the survey were self-employed. The University of Michigan study serves as further evidence that the quest for profits by the medical industry is the cause of soaring health care costs.

Medical malpractice “reformers” claim that severe limits on the rights of patients are needed in order to slow the growth of medical costs. However, such limits will do nothing to control costs and will serve only to lower the quality of medical care by allowing physicians and hospitals to escape responsibility for negligence.